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News 4 This Week

News News/Business. The best stories of the week from NBC Washington. (CC)

NETWORK
NBC

DURATION
00:30:00

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SCANNED IN
Annapolis, MD, USA

SOURCE
Comcast Cable

TUNER
Channel 77 (543 MHz)

VIDEO CODEC
mpeg2video

AUDIO CODEC
ac3

PIXEL WIDTH
528

PIXEL HEIGHT
480

TOPIC FREQUENCY

Walter Reed 4, Leesburg 3, Citi 3, Harrison 3, Us 2, The City 2, Bethesda 2, Washington 2, Maryland 2, Virginia 2, Darcy Spencer 2, Liz Crenshaw 2, Melissa Melai 2, Chris Gordon 2, Barbara Harrison 2, Jackie Bensen 2, Ocean City 2, Washboard Absen 1, Saltwater Taffy 1, America 1,
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  NBC    News 4 This Week    News  News/Business. The best stories  
   of the week from NBC Washington. (CC)  

    July 31, 2011
    5:30 - 6:00am EDT  

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nouncer ] the new citi thankyou premier card gives you more ways to earn points. what's your story? citi can help you write it. welcome to "news4 this week." hi, everyone, i'm barbara harrison. we're going to show you some of the more interesting local stories making news this week. among them: >> there's a bear in the yard! >> a family has a wild close encounter at home. what happened next, and what you need to know in case you come across a bear. saved by the cell. how the new paying parking system works and how convenient is it compared to carrying quarters. how an actor gets the energy and strength to rock out on stage. another bear sighting has focus in loudoun county on edge. this one walked right through a family's front yard.
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jackie bensen spoke with a woman who got pictures of the bear just off route 15 in leesburg. >> i'm talking to my husband on the phone, and i'm going, hi, honey, and we're in the middle of a conversation, and i go there's a bear -- there's a bear in the yard! >> reporter: it was not something you would expect to see on a manicured front yard lawn, but there it was, a bear. it was captured after the unusual drama you would expect from people after seeing a bear in their house. >> my mom comes running into my room saying there's a bear, there's a bear. and i'm thinking this is a joke. >> we're watching this bear walk from the woods through our backyard. that's when we clicked the picture here and the bear continued to walk across the street, between those two houses. >> reporter: there have been several bear sightings in the leesburg area in recent months. experts say it's the time of year that 2-year-old cubs leave the den, with more open space being lost each year to development, man and bear are crossing paths more often.
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animal control officials advise the following. do leave the bear alone. don't leave food outside that will attract them in the first place. this includes open bowls of pet food and a dirty barbecue drill pan. >> we were definitely afraid. my brother ran outside because he was trying to get pictures of the bear. my mom and i were freaking out in case there was another bear, a mama bear. >> reporter: animal behavior experts say it's not really such a surprise that a bear ended up in their front yard. take a look. back there, a heavily wooded area and across the street, another wooded area. the experts theorize that the bear was trying to find a new home. reporting from leesburg, jackie bensen, news4. and the washington animal rescue league is looking for adoptive homes. not for bears, but dozens of rescued cats and dogs. the animals were recently brought in from two shelters in it west virginia. the shelters were overwhelmed, and the animals may have had to have been euthanized had they
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not been picked up. >> five cats, the rest dogs, and everything from dachshunds and bass set houndsierhoundsiers te labs. all she does is wag her tail and is looking for a new home. >> it's going to take a couple weeks before the animals are ready for adoption. the animal rescue league will hold an adopt-a-thon on the 6th. welcome news for those who have traffic tickets. mayor gray introduced an amnesty program that suspects tickets for the next few months. chris gordon describes why some are getting a break. >> reporter: the amnesty program forgives some tickets. it allows you to pay the fine on the face of the parking ticket without the penalty that normally doubles it. and you can clear photo enforcement violations without a
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penalty. all of this applies to tickets that were issued before january 1st of 2010, meaning tickets at least 18 months old. d.c. mayor vincent gray estimates the amnesty program will collect at least $6 million. >> in the current economic climate, we expect any number of people will take advantage of this opportunity to clear their debts to dmv, at a lower cost. it obviously also helps the city to collect revenue that otherwise would be pretty hard to come by. >> reporter: the d.c. dmv amnesty program begins august 1st and runs through january 27th of next year. you can pay old tickets without having to pay a penalty online at www.dmv.dc.gov. you can pay by phone at 866-893-0523. or you can pay in person at 301 c street northwest. but that's not advised, because of the expected crowds you could wait for hours to be served there. the dmv offers ticket payment
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plans, calling the whole program a win-win situation. >> we do have some tickets that the original fine amount is $150. and so the penalty would be an additional $150. so we're talking about $300, plus the $5 additional penalty. so the savings could be substanti substantial. >> reporter: we asked drivers who came to the dmv what they think of the amnesty plan. >> i think the fines are getting a little bit excessive, so that's why i would be for it. >> i think it's an excellent idea. >> reporter: do you have any of those old outstanding tickets? >> most definitely. i doubt very seriously too many people in the district don't have any tickets. >> reporter: when it comes to old, unpaid d.c. tickets, maryland residents owe the most, followed by virginia and district drivers. in the district, chris gordon, news4. and the last time d.c. offered a ticket amnesty program was ten years ago. avoiding a parking ticket has gotten a bit more
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convenient. you can now pay for parking anywhere in the district by using your cell phone. but it may not be for everyone. liz crenshaw shows us how it works. >> i have to call, because there is nowhere else to park. >> reporter: parking in the district is not fun. >> i'm putting in another dime. >> reporter: whether it's making sure you have a fistful of coins or parking at a meter that won't take your money, parking on d.c. streets is frustrating. the new solution, these green signs and stickers that allow you to pay to park with a simple cell phone call now at every street space in the city. from nats stadium to the hill, from u street to dupont. these park mobile signs cover all 17,000 spaces, whether meters or kiosks. we decided to give it a try. the system works best if you set up an account with park mobile at its website. you simply enter your cell phone number, your license plate numbers and credit card information. there's even an app you can
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download. but you don't need a smartphone. you can dial into park mobile using a simple flip phone. the system recognizes your phone number and confirms the car you want to park. >> enter the posted number. >> reporter: each meter or kiosk will have a number or zone on it. >> how many minutes would you like to park for? >> reporter: enter how many minutes you would like to park and -- >> your parking session has started. >> reporter: and then i got this confirmation text, your parking action has been activated. so in about two minutes, i'm all parked and paid for without pulling out my wallet. i also got an e-mail confirmation. it shows the time, zone, parking fee and transaction cost. in d.c., every time you pay to park with your cell, you're charged 32 cents by park mobile. even after i paid to park, the meter still read expired. so how does the meter reader know that i've paid? >> when they come up and check
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for violations, they'll punch in your tag number. >> reporter: and they'll know if i've paid. >> or if you've got ten tickets and they're going to boot you. >> reporter: no money in the meter. what do you think? >> it might help. >> i like it. >> reporter: you like that idea? >> i prefer it, yes. >> reporter: but it may not be for everyone. >> that is real confusing to me, when i could just go stick a card in. >> reporter: what if you go to one of those meters that doesn't have that credit card slot? the one that just takes the quarters? >> then i find the nearest parking lot. >> reporter: liz crenshaw, news4. >> liz did find one quirky thing. she said there is a small percentage of spaces where the awed system may not let you park for the maximum time limit. d dot officials say they're working this out. still ahead, a first look at incredible new technology as walter reed medical center steps into its new future. the push that's helped a local boxer go pro, all before he's old enough to vote.
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and it's more than beaches and boardwalks. the new thrills popping up in ocean city. whoever said that "less is more"
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some good news for women this week. there's a little more equality on capitol hill when it comes to lawmakers who have to go to the bathroom. a new ladies' rest room is open just off the house floor. it follows a legal complaint in 2007 saying the men's room was much nicer and closer to the house floor than the ladies' room. the capitol architect converted what used to be the parcel mentarian's office into that new ladies' bathroom. this fall, the merger between the walter reed and bethesda naval medical centers will mean an influx of new and improved technologies to help wounded warriors. the new walter reed national military medical center includes 2.5 million square feet and melissa melai got a first look at what's inside. >> we're a pretty big facility. and quite high across from one
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building to the other. >> reporter: we start inside the america building, a high-tech rehab room for amputees, a therapy pool, prosthetics lab, all kinds of computerized machinery to help patients walk further or bike more easily. >> it's been great. couldn't ask for anything better. >> you're now in the basement. >> reporter: this is the gate lab. it's the latest technology to test amputees. >> put the heel in toe marker level. >> reporter: watch them walk to see how their therapists and doctors can help. >> you'll see him come into view. >> reporter: each little ball works as a reflective marker. cameras on the walls track the markers and show therapists anything from which leg the patient is favoring to how their joints are moving. >> so we can look at you from the front, we can look at you from are the side. >> reporter: down the hall, more high-tech labs. one, a computer animated rehab room, like a flight simulator for the body. >> a lot of new technology. >> reporter: the program manager, david olivera is proud
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of the facility. >> so this is one of two trauma rooms that we have in the new facility. >> reporter: the rooms inside the arrowhead building's new e.r. the small computer room packed with patient records disconnects. >> this pops off and can travel with the patient. >> reporter: and upstairs, 50 icu rooms, where patients will have controls at their bedside, for ease, nothing touches the floor. there are lifts, dialysis access. there is also a new cancer treatment center. and behind this plastic, new hybrid surgery suites. of doctors will use this large lcd screen for input on patient treatment. >> it will help the patient. it will help all of us. the patient will get back to their place of work sooner. >> reporter: and the new rehab center for amputees is state of the art equipment. even climbing walls. just three months ago -- >> wouldn't provide. >> reporter: sergeant adam jack stepped on an ied while on
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patrol in afghanistan. >> without, like, the advances in technology, i feel that, you know, i wouldn't have come as far as i have. >> reporter: just down the hall, the apartment lab. >> that's where you learn to open a door again. unlock a lock. >> reporter: and patients from walter reed helped design this area, where they can test their prosthetics in private. any problems, they head to the lab across the hall. >> in minutes, they can get things like that taken care of. >> reporter: all they need now are the patients. >> it is rewarding to final see the finish line in sight. >> reporter: in bethesda, melissa melai, news4. and coming up -- >> you can feel so much better throughout the day. you can do so much more. >> the workout that helps this actor shine on stage while flaunting his washboard absen. and how a father turns his son and how a [ man ] i gothis son this new citi thankyou card
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and started earning loads of points. you got a weather balloon with points? yes i did. [ man ] points i could use for just about anything. ♪ ♪ there it is. [ man ] so i used mine to get a whole new perspective. ♪ [ male announcer ] the new citi thankyou premier card gives you more ways to earn points. what's your story? citi can help you write it.
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when you go to the theater, you expect to see actors
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bursting with energy. but singing and dancing every night sometimes for six hours is not easy. so we ask an actor with a touring company for "rock of ages," what's your workout? ♪ here i go again on my own >> we do eight shows a week. so every night of the week other than monday. you're dancing around and you're moving around a lot, and i'm jumping from bars to ceiling. so i have to be in decent shape for the show. when you are doing the cardiovascular movement throughout the show, it's giving me that cardio. and i don't need to then do it when i go to the gym. i'll do a three to five-minute warmup. just get my blood flowing and my heart rate up. but then i go straight to weights. it's a pretty well-rounded workout. generally speaking if i'm doing thighs the first day, i do chest and triceps that same day. and then the next day i'll do
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back and biceps. and generally speaking on the days that i do chest, i also do a shoulder workout. my character, stacy jax, spends a lot of time scantly clad. i don't have a lot of clothing on the entire performance. so i have to be in decent shape. also, i come to the gym so that i can warm up my voice before the show. if you're walking, running, jogging, lifting weights, you're -- the air that you are taking into your body, you're taking a lot more into your body, just because you're doing -- you're exerting your body a lot more. being a show, my body is taking in air or my diaphragm is taking air so that i can use it to sing. if you do this, and with a balanced diet, with a decent diet that you're not putting nonfood constantly into your body, you can feel so much better throughout the day. you can do so much more. and, i mean, you're not just here killing time. you're here to enjoy the time. you're here to live the time. >> peter told us he needed to
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gain weight for his performance, so to gear up for the tour, he focused on weight training and not a lot of cardio. a teenager in prince george's county is being called a boxing phenom. he's just 17 years old, and is he's already gone pro. darcy spencer caught up with dusty harrison in the ring. >> reporter: dusty harrison is just 17 years old. but he's already a professional boxer. the youngest in the nation with one win under his belt. >> it feels good. it's kind of exciting and it's fun going out with everybody asking for autographs and everything. it's fun. >> reporter: harrison grew up and still lives in southeast d.c. he works out at his dad's gym in ft. washington, old-school boxing. in fact, his dad, buddy hair harrison is a former boxer who manages his son's career. >> i wanted him to be able to take care of himself, just wanted him to handle himself. i had no idea it would go to
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this. >> reporter: dusty climbed into the ring for his first fight when he was 8 years old. he turned pro before his 17th birthday in may. if you were not boxing what would you be doing? >> i have no clue. i would be getting in trouble. >> reporter: dusty fights in the welterweight class. while there are weight restrictions, he can fight men of all ages. in his first professional bout in june, he beat a man more than twice his age. >> i mean, yeah, this is exciting. like, i couldn't ask for anything better. >> to see his hand raised and say he's the winner and he did good, and see him smile and happy, that's all i want. >> reporter: dusty trains six days a week and when he's not in the gym, he's in the classroom. he's a senior at high school. >> you don't have to worry about any bullies at school. >> no, they know who i am. >> reporter: while there is a dispute between who is a better fighter, dust -- owe. >> reporter: who would win if there were to be a fight here?
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>> me. he can't beat me. >> reporter: dusty is on his way to a promising career in the ring. >>ment to do the same thing, get another win. keep moving on in my career. >> reporter: darcy spencer, news4. and there's another young man in alexandria who is accomplishing things well beyond his years. he's become an author at the age of 7. evan mars has had epileptic seizures most of his life. a specially trained dog could help detect the seizures and make them less severe. a local charity stepped up, but his family has to come up with an additional $13,000 to pay for that dog. so evan decided to write a book to raise some money so he could get the dog he wants. >> it's about me and what my seizure dog will do for me. it only took me about three days or so. >> you can follow evan's progress and learn how to get a copy of his book by going to his blog at dogforevan.com.
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and next, the old favorites and new thrills at one of the ♪
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[ male announcer ] the new citi thankyou premier card gives you more ways to earn points. what's your story? citi can help you write it. plans to shut down a popular attraction at the national zoo have been scrapped thanks to a generous gift. state farm insurance donated $1.4 million to save the kids farm. earlier this year, the zoo announced plans to close that area for budget reasons. the farm cost about a quarter million dollars a year to operate. the new donation will keep it running for five years. well, if you live in this area, chances are you're no stranger to ocean city. it's got one of the most famous beach boardwalks out there, but you may not be familiar with some of the changes the tourists are enjoying these days. doug kammerer has a look at what's new and the attractions that keep people coming back. >> reporter: ocean city, maryland. >> the beach. i love the beach. >> walking on the beach and the boardwalk and the play ground. we love it.
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>> i like the beach and the girls. that's the best. >> reporter: it's not just a beach destination and that's probably what makes it such a popular place to visit. besides the surf, sun and sand, the city's three-mile-long boardwalk has tons to offer. ocean city is a food destination, and with offerings like the famous boardwalk fries, hot dogs, funnel cakes, saltwater taffy, and, of course, frozen treats, you'll want to take the advice of the oc tourism website. stop counting calories. >> every year, i bring my kids here just to hang out and have a good time. eat pizza, have popcorn. >> reporter: don't worry, though. you can always swim those calories off or try to keep up with these guys. ocean city can definitely bring the heat, but not too much. the average temperature is in the mid 80s between early june and early september. don't be afraid to dive in. the water is usually welcoming during the summer, with an average temperature of about 70 degrees. if you're looking for thrills out of the water, ocean city has that, too. the boardwalk boasts an arcade that needs no advertisement. >> people come and they -- we
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can't help it. i'm on the microphone talking about the theater, they usually see all of the games and stuffed animals and tickets inside and they're heading in. >> i just love playing motorcycle games. and i love that dance dance revolution game. it's pretty fun. >> reporter: let's have a little impromptu game right now, ready? >> this, and this. >> counselorstantly getting the newest games. >> reporter: above all, ocean city is a family destination. >> we grew up coming down. but we have been bringing the kids down for four years. >> the amusement park. and even a park where you have go-carting. the beach is really enough. because they love that. of but sometimes we come without the kids and that's when we do the adult stuff. yeah. nice, clean adult stuff, though. >> of course. >> great place to be with the kind of hot weather we've had around here. and that's all for "news4 this week." i'm barbara harrison. thanks for joining us. have a good one. i hate getting less. but i love getting more.
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